The sense of a place being sacred or set apart in some way is a familiar concept in most of the world’s religions. Many speak about church interiors having ‘atmosphere’
— where people detect that the natural and supernatural co-exist.
In the Christian tradition, Sacred Spaces are frequently places of pilgrimage or special devotion — places ‘made dirty with prayer’.
Yet, it would be wrong to believe that God can only be encountered in religious buildings. Like Jacob, we may not realise that God is present in all kinds of places. When a Pharisee asks Jesus where, and how, he can find the kingdom of God, Jesus answers ‘the kingdom of God is not coming with things that can be observed; nor will they say “look here it is” or ‘there it is”. For in fact the Kingdom of God is among you.’
Jesus saw God at the heart of daily living, and in commonplace events, such as children playing in the market place, women sweeping rooms and men sowing and reaping.
Seven Sacred Spaces is an imaginative way of helping us to realise that God is to be found in the midst of situations and encounters which are common to most of us. It is a means of helping us to recognise that our common life as Christians can be strengthened, by seeing that God is at work in all kinds of normal and routine activities and actions.
It is a means of strengthening our life in Christ for us as individuals and as Christian communities, since as a result of the ministry of Jesus we are assured that God is a God who is always in our midst.
Archbishop Barry Morgan